woensdag 22 juni 2011

Community Management: Difference of managing or rulling

In two weeks time I had encounters how easily personal with business can be mixed in a profession of a community manager.
To understand the story I divided to Business and Personal.
This is a story how it is easy to go out of hand because of personal private issues.

In this case a community manager should be having an elephant skin and be modest.
Most important to be-aware that you represent a client / a brand.

This following experience is set in the Virtual World Second Life where the balance easily can be broken.

Business Wednesday 23 may 2007

Second Life just had its maintenance and as a co – worker I checked with my private avatar the closed Sims from various projects. Mainly because one of our clients warned that during these times bugs could be there. There was one project I would never check as it was personal but this day as a joke I did and could get on it with an avatar that should not be able to.

Personal Wednesday 23 may 2007

I panicked. I IMed a friend with “I am on it”. During that time I trusted this person so much as we had so much great fun together. We met each other in real life and yes we had same thoughts ideas. And admired this person for who this person was was.
The person knew I worked for this company and the person knew I was under NDA and never will tell projects items.

Business Wednesday 23 may 2007

I took an alt to see if more could be on this project and the alt could. More panic as if this was the case people that should not be there could.
Quickly got hold of the person to close the project and finally they came after long wait.
Got kicked out and all was set back as it should.

Personal Wednesday 23 may 2007

I had a small talk with my friend about it that it was a nerve wrecking moment. And we just forget and do as all just wait.

Business Thursday 24 may 2007

I got a phone call that I was fired told the community what was on the project. This was informed by one of the community around these islands.
I replied that who ever mentioned this should be glad the project was seen by me and could make it quickly closed. It was nobody faults then only the bugs.
These words made sense and I was requested to stay out of SecondLife for couple of days to sort out.

Personal Thursday 24 may 2007

In sadness I called this friend and the person sympathized with me and found it awful that someone
told that about me. Told her thousands of times that the client should be happy it was me, not a stranger.

Business Monday 27 may 2007

I got a phonecall that a mail was on it’s way and I would be chocked.

Personal Monday 27 may 2007

The mail was from the friend that sympathized with me.

I called and asked why this betrayal and a different person were on the other line.

Business Monday 27 may 2007

My personal avatar went back in to second life. Broke all the friendships I had in this community of fans and stayed away from this project as I did not want to jeopardize this project.

2007 – 2009

In the years developed myself as a community manager Virtual Worlds. Created the event yearly in Europe about Virtual Worlds and helped a lot of clients to understand what Virtual Worlds are about and can be helpful as a tool.
My focus went from one virtual world platform to many and goal is to make more people understand outside the virtual worlds what this is about. Guide them to see if this can be a useful tool. Exploring the different successful projects and grids.
Connect people to the right persons.

2007 – 2009

After awhile my avatar was back in Second Life I told my story. Specially to people that wanted to know why I am on Second life and yes my favourite band Duran Duran brought me there. Specially after seeing on 11 September 2006 a program on the bcc about them and the fan waiting room on a sim called Avalon.
I am proud and honoured that this is written in a book called Second Lives from Tim Guest. In this book Nick Rhodes explains what his thoughts were and plans for the Duran Duran universe.
Some I told the story above as they could never understand why we broke sudden our friendship with this particular person. People I knew that can be trusted enough and needed to understand.
We got to learn that the project was given to someone from the band and it turned quiet.

Personal 15 june 2011

The buzz was for a long time around that the islands will be opened by the person I met years before.
In the experience over the year I was prepared and it did not much bother me. Only my worry was the way it was presented.
There was poor pr and official channels announcing that most of the old community started to be worried.
Gladly in a poor state the official channels started to buzz.
I got an invite on 15th june to have a look and was pleased of course to do so. For me a burden goes of my shoulder of being secret for what was on the islands.
In an hour I got an IM from a person from time ago.
The content became ugly after awhile as I was not interested or impressed about all kinds of words. I was accused of being jealous while at that point I could not be as so much was going on as an event was about to happen two days later.
And I told the person that jealousy is not the case just worried specially with the history of this person.

After awhile I have been told I was insane and this IM will be forwarded to who ever.
And got banned.

Business 15 june 2011

As a community manager myself you represent a brand. You are a bridge between your client and costumer.
Personal issues should not be in your way. There for it so surprising that the issues of the past got in the way and the person in question forgot that the argument ever happened should not be a burden.
Every costumer is holy. And in personal sense you should rise above all.
As a private person and costumer in this case a fan of this great band I had personally an issue against this person which is logical but there was no attack to the brand / band.
Only a private issue between this person and me. The conversation was not in the open done in private as it should be.

Questions are rising up.

Is this person that representing the brand afraid of the costumer? That should not be good in the profession.

Issues are easily solved as I suggested in the IM but then became accused of being insane.
Modesty is a virtue.

So why raise me from the community?

Personally I am not bothered as in 2007 a alt is easily made and can still enjoy the Duran Duran experience
But business wise it is easy to see in this encounter that you can be mixed up easily with emotions and personal issues while you are on the job.

There is a difference between managing a sim in a virtual world like Second Life or a forum or a company’s community or ruling it!


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